History of Khayelitsha

Khayelitsha is a partially informal township located on the Cape Flats in the city of Cape Town. The name is Xhosa for New Home. It is reputed to be the fastest growing township in South Africa. It covers an area of 38,7 km2. Plans to build Khayelitsha were first announced in 1983. By 1985 the suburb Site C had 30,000 inhabitants

Khayelitsha was one of the apartheid regime’s final attempts to enforce the Group Areas Act and was seen as the solution to two problems; the rapidly growing number of migrants from the Eastern Cape and overcrowding in other Cape Town townships. The ethnic make up of Khayelitsha is approximately 90,5% Black African, 8,5%

Coloured and ,5% White. About 75% of the residents identify themselves as Christians while about 20% follow traditional beliefs. The poverty, coupled with poor community infrastructure, lead to very high crime rates, gangs, violence, drugs as well as other societal ills. Khayelitsha has a very young population with fewer than 7% of its residents being over 50 years of age and over 40% of its residents being under 19 years of age. Jobs are in short supply and it into this environment that the Great Commission Development Trust seeks to make a difference.